Monday, December 29, 2008

International students celebrate the holidays away from home

On Tuesday, December 23, 50 students representing a handful of cultures gathered at the Butler Housing Commons building on the UIS campus to spend time together, listen to music and try a few new foods during a holiday party coordinated by Jeannie Capranica, acting assistant director of the Diversity Center.

The holiday party and other social opportunities for international students who stay on campus over winter break are written about in an article by the State Journal-Register on December 25, 2008.

Download a PDF of the article
20081225-SJR-InternationalStudents.pdf

Labels: , ,

Monday, December 22, 2008

Springfield upbeat at news of Governor's arrest

The mood in the capital city was for the most part upbeat when news of Governor Blagojevich's arrest broke on December 9.

UIS associate professor Marcel Yoder was among psychologists asked to explain the irreverent public reaction to such a serious situation. Yoder said that many people "have a tendency to believe the world is a just place. They'e glad the Governor is getting his comeuppance."

Yoder's comments appeared in a December 17, 2008, article in the State Journal-Register.

Download a pdf file
20081217-sjr-BallandChainParty.pdf

Labels: , ,

Friday, December 19, 2008

Is Illinois really the most corrupt state?

Rod Blagojevich's addition to the state's rather long list of public officials to run afoul of the law has led to the observation that if Illinois isn't the most corrupt state, it's at least "one hell of a competitor." But it turns out that determining which state really holds that title isn't so easy.

In an article published in the December 18, 2008, Kansas City Star, Chris Mooney, UIS professor of Political Science, observes, "It's notoriously difficult to measure political corruption."

Download a pdf file of the article
20081218-KCS-IsIllinoistheMostCorrupt.pdf

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Redfield commentary: Citizens must blame themselves

Kent Redfield, UIS emeritus professor of Political Science, filed a commentary with CNN on Gov. Rod Blagojevich and how he reflects the apparent general consensus among Illinoisans that "politics is solely about power, winning, and personal gain."

Download a pdf file of Redfield's commentary, which appeared on Dec. 16, 2008.
20081216-CNN-CommentaryonIllinoisVoters.pdf

Labels: , ,

Monday, December 15, 2008

Illinois citizens expect corrupt politics

A New York Times article recounting Illinois' long history of corrupt politicians speculates that Illinoisans have a wide-spread acceptance of less-than-ethical behavior by the people they elect to public office.

Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, observes in the article that, "There is this attitude among politicians, and frankly among citizens, that this is the way things are. Politics is for professionals."

Download a pdf file of the article, published on December 14, 2008.
20081214-NYT-InIllinoisaVirtualExpectation.pdf

Labels: , ,

Friday, December 12, 2008

Senate contenders unsure how to proceed

There is no shortage of potential candidates interested in filling President-elect Obama's vacant Senate seat, but in the current situation no one is sure exactly how to pursue that interest.

Chris Mooney, UIS professor of Political Science, says it's his opinion that -- if the choice falls to (current) Lt. Gov. Pat Quinn -- the appointment won't go to anyone known to be under consideration by (current) Gov. Rod Blagojevich. "We're making this up as we go along," Mooney observed.

Mooney was interviewed for an Associated Press article that appeared on December 12, 2008.

Download a pdf file
20081212-AP-ContendersNotSure.pdf

Labels: , ,

State's political culture fosters corruption

Even some of the most cynical observers of Illinois politics were shocked by the behavior that brought about Gov. Rod Blagojevich's arrest on federal corruption charges. But it was the extent of his brazenness that surprised people rather than the arrest itself; many point to Blagojevich as just an extreme example of the state's political culture.

In an article in the December 11, 2008, Christian Science Monitor, Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, says that Illinois tends to "treat politics as a business. It's not about public interest…It's about power and winning and jobs."

Download a pdf file of the article
20081211-CSM-CorruptionWindsThru.pdf

Labels: , ,

Blagojevich arrest hinders ability to conduct state business

Though Governor Rod Blagojevich gives no sign of stepping down, his ability to fulfill his official duties is seriously in question.

Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, says that while Blagojevich is governor and can sign bills and issue executive orders, "Nothing he does will be taken on its merits. It will all be: How does this fit into (his) legal problems?"

Redfield's comments were part of an article published in the December 11, 2008, Peoria Journal Star.

Download a pdf file of the article
20081211-PJS-ArrestCripplesGovernor.pdf

Labels: , ,

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Corruption in state government isn't anything new

Governor Rod Blagojevich's arrest on federal corruption charges is just the latest chapter in Illinois' long history of political scandal.

Chris Mooney, UIS professor of Political Science, observed that "Government in Illinois isn't about political ideology or helping people. It's about which…brother-in-law are you going to get a job…because he helped you get into office."

Mooney's comments appeared in a December 10, 2008, posting in the Conservative Libertarian Outpost.

Download a pdf file
20081210-CLO-JustWhatIsNewinIl.pdf

Labels: , ,

Close ties to governor a liability

Illinois State Rep. Jay Hoffman has been among Gov. Rod Blagojevich's closest political allies and friends. But Hoffman, who serves as chair of the House Transportation Committee, may find he has less clout when the legislature reconvenes.

Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, notes that while the Governor's friendship had previously been a big asset, "now it's probably a liability."

Redfield's comments appeared in an article published December 10, 2008, in the Olympia, Washington, Olympian.

Download a pdf file of the article
20081210-Olympian-HoffmansClout.pdf

Labels: , ,

Quinn, Blagojevich don't get along

Though Pat Quinn serves as Lt. Governor, it's no secret that he and Gov. Rod Blagojevich don't like each other. An article that appeared in the December 10, 2008, Huffington Post examined the reasons for this and speculated on Quinn's future should Blagojevich leave office.

In the article, Kent Redfield, professor emeritus of Political Science at UIS, noted that the Quinn-Blagojevich relationship was "a marriage of convenience…their experiences are very different, so they really didn't have a lot to talk about."

Download a pdf file of the article
20081210-HP-QuinnVBlagojevich.pdf

Labels: , ,

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Blagojevich re-election is a "sad commentary"

When Rod Blagojevich was first elected governor in 2002 he presented himself as a reformer; however by the time he was re-elected in 2006 the fact that his administration was under federal investigation was already widely known.

In an article that appeared in the December 9, 2008, Bloomington Pantagraph, Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, notes, "It's a pretty sad commentary that we elected him again."

Download a pdf file of the article
20081209-BP-HistoryRepeats.pdf

Labels: , ,

Arrest reinforces image of state as corrupt

An Associated Press story filed on December 9, 2008, reports on the growing opinion that the arrest of Gov. Rod Blagojevich has only reinforced Illinois' image as among the most corrupt states in the nation.

In the article, Charles Wheeler III, director of Public Affairs Reporting at UIS, notes that Blagojevich's apparent brazenness "blows everything else out of the water."

Download a pdf file of the article
20081209-AP-ArrestReinforcesImage.pdf

Labels: , ,

Wheeler: Blagovejich "most incompetent" governor

In an article contrasting the early promise of Gov. Rod Blagojevich with his subsequent performance and, finally, arrest on federal corruption charges, Charles Wheeler III, director of Public Affairs Reporting at UIS, assessed Blagojevich as "the most incompetent governor we've had in the last 50 years."

The Chicago Tribune article was published December 10, 2008.

Download a pdf file
20081210-CT-BlagojevichsPromiseCrashes.pdf

Labels: , ,

Redfield in NYT: Blagojevich may have tripped over ambition

Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, was among those asked to comment on Governor Rod Blagojevich's arrest on federal corruption charges for an article that ran in the December 10, 2008, New York Times.

Redfield noted that while Blagojevich "had clearly come into office believing he was destined for bigger things," he may have tripped up on his own ambition.

"The combination of arrogance and stupidity…is just stunning," said Redfield. "There's no feedback loop or reality check."

Download a pdf file of the article
20081210-NYT-BlagojevichArrest.pdf

Labels: , ,

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Barricaded workers are a symbol

The laid-off workers of now-defunct Republic Widows and Doors who have taken over the Chicago factory and are refusing to leave until they receive assurances of promised severance and vacation pay have put a face to the reality of hard economic times.

Kent Redfield, UIS professor emeritus of Political Science, noted in a Chicago Tribune article that, while the case is classic politics, "politicians who… have something to offer are rightly intervening.

"It becomes a metaphor for what's going on in the larger economy," Redfield said.

Download a pdf file of the article, published on December 8, 2008.
20081208-CT-WorkersareaMetaphor.pdf

Labels: , ,

Monday, December 8, 2008

First-generation college students face challenges

Students who are the first members of their families to attend college can face challenges beyond those confronting other freshmen. At UIS, 11 percent of the current freshmen class belongs to this group.

Read a profile of some of first-generation, college-bound high school seniors that appeared in the December 7, 2008, State Journal-Register
20081207-sjr-SomeCollege-boundKids.pdf

Labels: , ,

Freshman determined to graduate

Though UIS freshman Christal Luster isn't the first of her siblings to go to college, she is the first to enroll with the intention of graduating and pursuing a career of her own. Everyone else in Christal's immediate family – both parents, her two sisters, and her brother – works for the family company, Clintex Laboratories, near Chicago.

Luster credits the small-campus atmosphere at UIS with helping her make the transition and keep up her resolve.

Read the article that appeared in the December 6, 2008, State Journal-Register
20081206-sjr-FreshmanDetermined.pdf

Labels: , ,

Monday, December 1, 2008

New search options gaining popularity

Established Internet search engines such as Google may be facing competition from a variety of newer tools such as Blinkx, Grokker, and ChaCha.

In an article in the November 26, 2008, eSchoolNews, UIS OTEL Director Ray Schroeder noted that these new tools can be a boon to students, especially when their searches involve media other than print.

Download a pdf file of the article
20081126-eSN-NewSearchTools.pdf

Labels: , ,

Constant connection to work is a mixed blessing

With the advent of e-mail, Blackberries, and smart phones, more and more workers find it hard to be "off duty."

An article in the November 24, 2008, State Journal-Register quotes Keith Burton, assistant professor and chair of Psychology at UIS, who notes that "employees need time to rest in order to be productive.

"We're not built to be constant working machines," he said.

Download a pdf file of the article
20081124-SJR-WiredWorld.pdf

Labels: , ,